Last week, I shared some tips to help you come back from a running break. Once you decide to get back into the swing of things, you obviously need a plan to follow, right? Here are some great resources I’ve found helpful in the past, and hope you will find helpful in the future – both for running and strength training.
This is definitely the quintessential beginner running program – Couch to 5k. It really starts out nice and easy, and has participants running a 5k in just 9 weeks. The commitment is minimal too – 3 days a week, around 20-30 minutes per session. The program also has an app users can put on their phone for motivation and easy documentation. If you are looking for something a little bit further in distance, they also offer the Couch to 10k program as well.
I think this plan to be very simple, very cut and dry. There is nothing fancy about it, but it definitely gets the job done. It includes a lot of run/walk intervals and ample rest days as well, which is the best way to populate a beginner running plan.
This plan is not quite as beginner as the others, but it is still a great place to start. You should enter the half marathon plan with a base of about 4 miles max, and the marathon program with a base of about 8 miles for your long run. Both types of novice plans have nice, gradual climbs, which are great for someone who may not know how to train for this type of distance. For my very first marathon back in 2008, this is the plan I used. It was very manageable to follow.
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This is a 12 week program, broken out into 3 separate phases. The first phase is strength only (no cardio!). The second phase introduces the cardio component, and then the third phase brings in HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training). There is also nutrition advice in the form of whole foods and supplements. This is a very well rounded plan, but may not be great if you are short on time. It asks for a commitment of 5-6 days a week, which just isn’t possible for some people. You also need to be in a gym, so out home workouts just don’t show up in this series like some others. However, this plan does tell you what to do each and every day, so for those people who really need something to follow – this plan is a great option.
This is a very popular app that you may have already heard of (and used!) but I still feel like it is worth mentioning. It offers 100+ full-body workouts and also allows you to keep track the workouts you do right in the app. There are different goals – Get Lean, Get Toned Get Strong, and Get Focused, so you can choose your workout based on what you are working towards. Within the goals are different levels as well – beginner, intermediate, and advanced. The user is able to either look at photos of the exercises, or download the videos right to their phone. This program is great for people looking for variety, and who want a quick and effective workout.
This is an amazing YouTube channel! It is, without a doubt, my favorite way to workout at home. There are videos that are nice and short in length, and then some a little closer to an hour long. The hosts walk you through each exercise. The exercises are effective and the moves are not the generic ones you may find with some other workout videos. This can be more cardio heavy in some of the videos, so just be sure to search for the more strength based workouts.
This is a great app to checkout. It is perfect for the person looking for a great workout, but doesn’t have access to the equipment. None of the workouts require any sort of equipment, and do a great job of combining cardio and strength training. The app itself costs $.99, and then individual workouts also cost the same. If you compare this to a gym membership, it will probably end up costing you the same amount as 1 month at a gym. There are also 4 different fitness levels you can work off of, so you will not be thrown into something completely out of your league.
This program is more traditional in the sense that you will need a gym to complete the workouts. It is also a 12 week program, aiming to build muscle and lose fat. There is a combination of full body workouts, along with those aiming to work specific areas on specific days.